So sorry for the late update! I had a load of homework to do, and school was just being . . . difficult. Anyway, then I had to update my Sherlock fanfic, and I would have started writing this after I updated that, but then I found out that I made a mistake in it, so then I had to find a way to work around that, and write that it. Anyway, I'm here now, so let's go! Before we start though, I would just like to say thank you to all of you who reviewed the last chapter!
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Caroline walked down the quiet hallways of the castle that was now her home, though she hoped not for much longer. After the incident the day before, Caroline had avoided looking at the Prince during breakfast, and had been avoiding him all day, which, in a castle of that size, was quite easy. It was almost mid-day, Caroline guessed though, so she would still have to see the Prince at lunch and dinner. Still, he hadn't called for her, which was good. She had already been told that she had to do everything the Prince asked, so if he called for her, she was not allowed to refuse.
Anna had woken her that morning, and they had not discussed Prince Niklaus, at Caroline's request. Instead, they had spoken of the other servants in the castle, and who they served specifically, or what their part was. Anna said that there was only four other servants that she ever spoke to, and the nurse. The four servants were called Bonnie, Jeremy, Matt and Jenna, and the nurse was called Meredith, Meredith Fell.
Bonnie was a pretty, dark skinned girl, who specifically looked after Prince Elijah. This was good, Anna said, because Prince Elijah treated his servant kindly, and tried not to treat her too poorly.
Jeremy was a tall, well-built young man, with dark, brown eyes, and dark hair that sometimes fell into his eyes. Anna gave Caroline a lot more information about Jeremy than any other person in the castle, and had a small smile on her face as she did so. Caroline did not ask Anna if she had any feelings for Jeremy, though that much was obvious. She would save those questions for later. Jeremy was the servant of Prince Finn. Originally, he had been the servant of Prince Kol, but after aforementioned Prince slaughtered an entire village nearby, the King and Queen decided it was best for Jeremy to serve Finn. Prince Kol no longer had any servants after that incident.
Matt was also a very tall, handsome young man, with dark blonde hair, and striking blue eyes. Anna said that him and Jeremy were the talk of all the servant girls, as they were the only male servants in the entire castle. Matt was the loyal servant of Princess Rebekah, as he was the only person who could actually handle her tantrums.
Jenna was one of the older servants, though only by a few years. She was the one who looked after the others, with her motherly instincts. She was a kind, and beautiful young woman, with pale red hair, and dark eyes. She was the servant of Prince Niklaus. Many people wouldn't have thought that someone as kind and gentle as Jenna could last serving Prince Niklaus, but they had a sort of . . . mutual understanding. Anna said she couldn't explain it herself, but after fifteen years of serving already, Jenna was still alive, which was more than could be said for other servants of the Originals.
And Meredith was the kind-hearted nurse who lived in the castle. She was not normally needed by the Originals, though she gave them herbs and such that they needed sometimes. She cared more for visitors and the servants. She had tanned skin, and dark hair, and Anna said that her quarters were quite near to Caroline's, round the corner, in fact, if ever she were needed.
Caroline sighed, as she passed a door that she now knew to be Meredith's chambers. It amazed her that so many people could stand to live in the castle for so long. Meredith, Jenna, Anna, Matt . . . it didn't make any sense to her. The Mikaelsons were monsters, nothing more. And speaking of such, Caroline could see Prince Kol coming down the hallway at that moment. He was wearing very fancy, velvet clothes of the deepest purple, and his hair was slightly ruffled. It wasn't that hard to see why all the other girls in the village found the Mikaelsons attractive, but their looks were of a dark beauty, which Caroline found disturbingly frightening. Kol especially. His eyes were dark, and predatory, and his smile extremely unnerving.
As he passed Caroline, she looked to the floor, avoiding eye contact. Even though she had taken vervain in her tea every morning since arriving, she still didn't like to look directly into the eyes of any Mikaelson. It always felt as if they were staring into her soul. However, Caroline didn't have to look up to feel Kol's eyes on her. She could feel him looking her up and down, and she could feel his cruel smile. She didn't even want to know what he was thinking about, but she let out a sigh of relief when she was sure he had passed her.
Unfortunately, she only got as far as the stone-washed staircase before she heard the familiar whoosh that accompanied vampire-speed. The heavy weight of Kol's body pressed against her before she even had time to react. He had his arm around her throat, not tight enough to choke her, but not too loose, so as she couldn't struggle. Though that's not to say that she didn't try. His other arm was around her waist, pulling her close to him. It made her sick, to be that close to a murderer. Obviously the feeling was not mutual.
"Hello, Caroline. We're going to play a little game." he whispered right next to her ear, sending a shiver down her spine.
Caroline was not ashamed to admit that she screamed.
Klaus heard the scream from the other side of the castle, and it shook him to his very core. Caroline. He didn't know how he knew it was her, but he just did, and that was enough to send him running out of his chambers at top speed. He'd only heard it once, which didn't make finding her any easier. Still, that didn't mean he wasn't going to try. He would search every room in the castle if he had to. He tried to think through what might have happened. Since the castle was heavily guarded, with magic, and watch towers, it was highly unlikely that an intruder had gotten in. And judging by the fear behind the scream, Caroline was being attacked. Kol. It made perfect sense.
Klaus had known it had been a bad idea to let Kol continue to live in the castle after the "village incident", as his father called it. If it wasn't for Esther's apparent "undying love and mercy" for her children, Kol probably would have been killed by now. Mikael didn't much care what happened to his children, and everybody knew it. If it were up to him, they would probably all be dead. There was a reason they were known as monsters, because that's what they were. It was no wonder that Caroline hadn't wanted to come and live in the castle in the first place. They killed people. They were abominations. Oh for God's sakes, Klaus thought to himself, I'm thinking like Finn!
He shook his head at his foolish thoughts. None of that was important at the moment. All that mattered was finding Caroline. He looked in all the doors he came across, and down every passageway, but the feisty blonde could not be seen. For the first time in his life, Klaus was beginning to panic. What if Kol had already . . . no, he wouldn't. Klaus knew for a fact that Kol liked to play with his victims first. Starting with mind games, and then physical torture. Klaus didn't know whether that made it better or worse. It did, however, make it easier to find them.
As Klaus began to hear sobbing and harsh whispers, he knew he was getting close, and he felt anger bubble up inside him. He had seen his brother murder countless innocent people, but not her. Not this girl. Not Caroline. She was different. She was . . . light, and . . . strength. Klaus had never met anyone like her, vampire, human, witch, no one compared. And no one ever would. If Kol every harmed a hair on her pretty little head . . .
"Please . . . don't." Klaus could hear them clearly now, and he heard the tears in Caroline's voice. She was whispering, but he could still hear her, which meant that he was close. He felt his hands ball up into fists, as he made his way to the staircase.
"Don't worry, love. We're only going to have a little fun . . . " Hearing Kol's menacing voice made Klaus hurry, as he made it to the bottom of the staircase. He could see Kol and Caroline clearly now, stood at the top. They were facing away from him, and Kol was whispering in Caroline's ear. The small amount of space between them made Klaus want to drive a stake through his brother's heart right that second. Kol also had his arm around Caroline's waist, which angered the future King more than he could fathom.
"Hello, brother." Klaus said, in a tone that was angry, but still little over a whisper in volume. He'd always believed that you didn't need to be loud to get your point across. It was much more effective to torture someone than to shout at them, after all. "You wouldn't mind letting dear Caroline go, would you? It's just that I have lots to do, you see, and I don't really have time to - "
"Oh but, you see, I can't do that, Niklaus." Kol turned to face his brother, still keeping his firm hold on Caroline, who was now crying. Her eyes were full of fear, and pleading, and it broke Klaus' heart to see her like that. Kol gave a cruel, short laugh, and smiled widely at Klaus. "We were having so much fun, weren't we, love?"
Klaus tried to keep his voice calm, and indifferent. He knew that if Kol thought for even a second that he cared for Caroline as much as he did, he would snap her neck in an instant. He liked to torture Klaus especially, claiming that his other siblings were no fun. "Ah, but she doesn't seem to be having that much fun, Kol. Maybe you should just let her go? I'm sure you could find a village full of very fun girls nearby?"
"But where would the fun be in that?" Kol beamed back. And just when Klaus thought he couldn't get any angrier, Kol reached up, and stroked Caroline's soft cheek with one long, slender finger. "Because, and I thought this was obvious, but clearly not . . . I love to torture you, Niklaus. It is not about the kill, or the blood, it's about seeing the look on your face, when I hold something that is yours, just beyond your reach. And then . . . to see you crumble when I destroy it."
"Let. Her. Go." Klaus breathed, and he could feel himself shaking with anger. He always knew Kol had a strange fascination with hurting his brother, thought Klaus had never understood why. He now understood that Kol was just sick and twisted. He'd always been a little bit like that when he was human, and obviously, becoming a vampire had only magnified that. As he'd gotten older, he'd become more bitter, and more twisted, to the point now, where Klaus couldn't even recognize him as his own brother. It was true that the Originals killed people, but they didn't have to, and they didn't do it as often now. They fed, and then they compelled the person to forget. Elijah had even given up feeding on human blood, and had taken to hunting animals, with Finn. But Kol, Kol had always loved to maim, and to torture. He could snap someone's neck without a second thought, and now he had Caroline.
"As you wish, brother."
It all seemed to happen in slow motion after that, but yet Klaus stood frozen, unable to do anything about it. He saw Kol release Caroline, and he saw the relief on her face. But that only lasted for a second. Because just as soon as Kol had let go, he gave Caroline a very forceful push, sending her tumbling down the stairs. Klaus watched in horror, as Caroline's hair flew around her terrified face, and her body hit the stair repeatedly, unable to stop herself. He heard each sickening crack, every break of bone. He could hear her heartbeat in his ears, beating fast and hard, like a hummingbird. He saw her ankle, sticking out from underneath her dress, at a sickening angle. Kol was gone before she hit the floor, running past Klaus at vampire-speed. And Klaus winced, as he heard the final crunch of Caroline's neck, as she got to the bottom of the staircase. Her eyes were closed, and her heartbeat had stopped.
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